By now we have all heard about the release of the Google Universal Analytics to the public. Universal Analytics introduces many new and interesting features, and we’ll go over the top 5 in this article.
Add Custom Search Engines
Older analytics reported organic traffic as only those coming from a traditional search engine. But what if you consider Yellow Pages and Yelp “organic” as well? Before the new version, you would have had to create complex reports or manually add the individual sources.
With the Universal Analytics, you can specify any referral website to be a “search engine” and would thus be counted as organic traffic. Even though the definition of organic traffic is somewhat subjective, this surely gives us a way to set up our accounts the way we want to.
Adding Offline Conversions to Your Google Analytics Data
Perhaps even a bigger feature than the first, Google Analytics will finally be able to track offline conversions. If you are a small local business that deals with clients face-to-face, this functionality will come in very handy.
The Universal Analytics will allow you to send conversion data from virtually any device. This means you could track how many people come into your store, how many of those make a purchase, what percentage of them use coupons, and so on. The possibilities are endless.
Custom Dimensions and Metrics
Custom dimensions and metrics will come in handy when you want to track things that Google Analytics doesn’t track automatically. As mentioned above, you will be able import data from almost any digital device which means you will most likely set those up as custom metrics for tracking purposes.
Create Advanced Segments
Universal Analytics allow us to create advanced segments across sessions so that we can track returning users easier. If you love remarketing campaigns as much as we do here at AdFicient, you will love this feature!
Along with custom advanced segments, we are not also able to setup session timeouts. Historically Google has set this value to 30 minutes and there was no way to change it, but now we can increase it up to four hours.
Mobile App Analytics
With the rapidly expanding mobile atmosphere, Google knew we needed a better way to track and analyze traffic on the mobile apps. Universal Analytics have features that help us with this issue a bit more.
Some of the app performance metrics include:
- Number of installations
- How the app was accessed (devices and networks)
- In-app purchases
- Geographic locations and languages for your visitors
- Number of screens seen per visit
- Tracking for special content such as videos
What Universal Analytics Doesn’t Have Yet
- Integration from Previous Google Analytics – Unfortunately there is no way yet to integrate from the previous Google Analytics. The only way to use Universal Analytics is to create a new profile and start fresh.
- AdSense integration – Currently, there is clean way to integrate Universal Analytics with AdSense as with previous GA. The only option is to import AdSense data into your Universal Analytics, which can be clunky and time-consuming.
- Content Experiments – If you used content experiments in previous Google Analytics, then you are out of luck for now as Universal Analytics doesn’t support that yet.
According to Google, all of these features will be implemented in the new Universal Analytics, the only question is when!